It's A Family TraditionMost of my family on my father's side worked helping the elderly in their homes or otherwise. When I was a child, my father would often take me to work at the nursing home with him, and the residents were always so kind, and adorable.
As I grew up, I developed anxiety disorder. Naturally I have to take medication for it.
At the age of 24, I trained to become a Personal Care Worker, and it was my dream to assist elders in their homes.
I was not able to. Due to the fact that I take a medication often used by the elderly, and it being addictive and abusable, I was judged as a "liability" and was not allowed to work in people's homes, although I had no record of theft or abusing the drug I was prescribed. So I took a position working in a home for people who've had strokes or other forms of dementia. Sometimes I was there to watch over the lonely people whom had no family or loved ones, and were dying alone.
I had one patient who was very cruel, but it was only due to what her stroke had done to her. She wanted to smoke constantly but I had to take her outside and away from the home to the sidewalk where she demanded I kneel on the ground with an umbrella to shield her from the wind, as she held a constant flame to her cigarette and smoked. Every day, as we returned to the home she would request a certain elevator be held, while she went to the toilet. I was in the habit of not taking my medication because I felt ashamed of it and just bit the bullet and dealt with my anxiety.
Well one typical day, I was holding one of four elevators for my patient. A visitor to the home told me to move out of the way. I assumed he knew the nature of some of the residents and I asked if he would please call one of the other elevators; my patient was in the washroom.
Well he said gruffly "move you dumb *****" and shoved me to the floor and got on the elevator. My patient came out then and was furious I had allowed "her" elevator to be taken and roundly abused me all the way back to her room.
This was too much; being pushed by that man and my patient calling me every name she could think of. I told her when we returned to her room I need to use the washroom and called a nurse to watch my patient.
I went directly to the nurses' station, around the corner and quietly had a massive panic attack.
I was fired two days later because of it. The nurse on duty was angry at me for having a panic attack and after allowing me two more shifts at the home, the company of which I was employed fired me.
"We have fired people for not washing their hair every day" was the response when I cried in the office at my job.
My dream was pulled out from under me. I don't know if I will pursue it again.
I love elders and want to take care of them.
DelicataAqueum 31-35, F 0 Jan 20, 2013